Palestinians read leaflets dropped by Israeli military planes over the northern Gaza Strip. (File pic)

The Israeli air force has dropped leaflets on the Gaza Strip warning residents that it plans to escalate its two-week-old offensive.

The notice says Israel is about to begin a “new phase in the war on terror.” It says Israel will “escalate” an operation that already has killed more than 800 Palestinians.

The army said Saturday that it has dropped the fliers throughout Gaza. It says the notices are meant as a “general warning.”

Israel launched the offensive two weeks ago to halt years of Palestinian rocket attacks. The army says the operation is directed only at the ruling Hamas militant group. But Palestinian officials say roughly half of the more than 800 casualties have been civilians.